Courtesy of the subjects.Getty Images
Style Points is a weekly column about how fashion intersects with the wider world.I voted as I did so many things this year—in sweatpants. The convenience of the absentee ballot may take a little of the glamour out of the voting process, but it hasn’t divorced the process from fashion entirely. After all, whether it be suffragettes or civil rights activists, fashion has always played a role at the polls. While in 2016, a wave of women voters wore white suits, in tribute to the suffragette uniform, this election cycle seemed more focused on comfort and stability—especially for in-person voters faced with multi-hour waits. And subtler, more personal forms of self-expression prevailed. For designer Ophelia Chen, a first-time voter who became an American citizen last year, she wore something that, she says, “symbolizes me as a minority woman,” She chose the same hot-pink outfit (from her brand Bobblehaus) that she wore for the Women’s March this year, including a matching bucket hat “to represent my generation Z,” and, of course, a mask.
Ophelia Chen’s voting fit, complete with bucket hat.
Courtesy of the subject.
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Designer Prabal Gurung sent in his mail ballot early. Clad in a “cozy and heartwarming” hand-dyed sweater and his favorite pair of slippers, both from his native Nepal, he cast his vote for, he says, “leadership that represents unity, hope, and progress. Wearing items from my home country always makes me feel centered and grounded, more connected to who I am and what I stand for.” For his walk to the mailbox, his mom by his side, he broke out the colorful VOTE T-shirt he designed. Abrima Erwiah, the founder of Fashion our Future 2020 and co-founder of the label Studio One Eighty Nine, also kept it all in the family, bringing along her young nephews, who ended up sporting their own “I am a future voter” stickers. She wanted them to see her voting, she says, “and to spend time with my family…to honor our tradition of voting together or spending time together as a family on Election Day when it is possible to do…